Social Phobia

by Hawke Robinson published Nov 11, 2016 11:07 AM, last modified Nov 11, 2016 11:07 AM

For details on this diagnosis, see the relevant section of the Recreation Therapy Handbook of Practice, the Diagnostic & Statistical Manual of the APA, and related sources.

A graduated RPG program has been developed by W.A. Hawkes-Robinson for this population.

It begins with solo adventures, and solo computer-based play to expose the client to the basic RPG concepts on their own.

Then graduated to “safe” online RPG.

Then as their anxiety is reduced through repeated safe experiences, transition to larger online RPG community (but still a safer community).

Generally, after some weeks/months, they indicate interest in trying the next stage, tabletop RPG.

This may be provided initially one-on-one at the client’s home, to help them gain some confidence and competence in the basic mechanics and play style.

Over time, provide them with transportation to a safe gaming environment at another location (not a public location or game store at this stage). Continue one-on-one. As anxiety level is reduced, introduce the client to a group of players at this safe remote location.

Over time, as the client adjusts to this more social situation at the safe location, propose observing some Pick-Up Games (PUGs) at a local hobby store, with a known “safe”Gַame Master, at a known “safer” gaming location. Only to observe, not required to participate or interact at all.

Repeat this process until the client feels ready to try joining once of these games (with the safe GM).

Initially remain in sight of the client. As client anxiety level reduces, ask permission from client for you to go out of sight for small, but incrementally increasing periods, and check in on anxiety levels.

Repeat this process until the client reports low enough anxiety to allow client to play TRPG sessions without TR supervision.